IT Focus Area: cloud
November 10, 2016
Three Steps to IT Transformation: Highlights from Dell EMC World 2016
The big news at this year’s Dell EMC World conference was the $67 billion merger of the two companies — the largest merger in tech history — and how Dell EMC plans to lead the journey toward digital transformation through IT innovation.
More than 8,000 customer and partner attendees headed to Austin, Texas to discover how this merger will impact their IT organizations.
Michael Dell didn’t disappoint during his keynote. He shared a powerful vision – not just for Dell but for the future of the tech industry. He said that although Dell will provide the infrastructure for the digital future, it’s up to us to create the inventions that will solve business problems and bring social change to the world.
The 3 Steps to IT Transformation
Dell EMC presented a three-step approach to IT transformation:
1. Modernize your IT infrastructure
2. Automate routine tasks
3. Transform your business with hybrid cloud technologies
Here’s what this process looks like in greater detail:
1. Modernize your IT infrastructure.
If you attempt to transform your business without first modernizing your environment, you won’t achieve the expected value from your investment. You'll miss out on efficiencies, greater agility, and cost savings.
Modernization may include leveraging Flash storage, hyper-converged infrastructure and software-defined technologies to achieve higher performance and cost savings.
The first step to modernization is standardizing your IT services. Creating a catalog of pre-defined IT services simplifies your offerings and drives business transformation. Think of IT standardization as like the foundation for a house – it acts as a strong base for everything else you add on.
Virtualizing your IT environment is also crucial during this phase. Even if you’ve already virtualized some areas, you may benefit by expanding your efforts. For example, you may have opportunities to virtualize your storage environment, network infrastructure, or database servers. Consolidating and abstracting your physical infrastructure makes it easier for you to manage and protect your workloads as you transform your IT.
Convergence is also key to IT modernization. But convergence is less about technology and more about people. When you integrate separate technologies, you also bring together teams that might not have worked together in the past. This requires changes to your processes and organizational structure.
2. Automate. Automate. Automate.
Once you modernize your environment, you can automate routine tasks and simplify your infrastructure management. Through process automation, IT organizations can save time and ensure success by standardizing common services and focusing on common issues. Process automation brings improvements in a methodical and results-driven manner.
This step also includes automating and simplifying your service management via orchestration. Orchestrating non-standard, un-virtualized infrastructure is costly and complex. To reduce your costs and risks, complete step one – modernization – before you move to automation and orchestration.
Through automation and orchestration, you can create self-service portals that streamline your provisioning process and lead to faster time to value.
3. Transform your business.
After you’ve modernized and automated your environment, you can begin your business transformation. A vital part of transformation is moving to the cloud. The cloud gives you speed and agility that just isn’t possible in a traditional IT environment.
Transformation includes application identification and rationalization, where you decide which workloads should reside on-premises in a private cloud, off-premises in a public cloud, or a combination of both in a hybrid cloud. Selecting the right type of cloud infrastructure allows you to deliver exactly the right amount of IT exactly when and where the business needs it.
But the cloud alone won’t solve all of your problems. According to Michael Dell, the public cloud is more costly than a modernized data center. He said, “If someone stands up and says, ‘I’ve got a cloud-first strategy and my strategy is everything to the public cloud,’ I think what you’ll find is that their strategy is uncompetitive relative to a modernized and automated data center. We have proved this pretty definitively.”
Now Is the Time to Transform Your IT
In today’s fast-paced market, new disruptors have the potential to grab your market share.
According to Dell’s Digital Transformation Index, 53 percent of business leaders are experiencing digital disruption. Seventy-eight percent consider digital start-ups a threat, and 45 percent fear that they will be obsolete in three-five years.
To remain competitive, you must transform your IT infrastructure now.
As Michael Dell said, “The future doesn’t care if you are ready or not.”